RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD REVEALED
"Now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested... Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe." Romans 3:21-22.
Radiology is a vital part of diagnostic medicine in our modern world. A radiologist's training allows this doctor to read and interpret X-ray images, indicating anything that is a deviation from normal conditions. The radiologist is able to write a diagnosis for the attending physician. Did you know that in the New Testament God has left an X-ray of a human being? He has also left a letter of what He has found and also indicates the remedy that He himself has provided in light of the serious illness of the sinful patient. In Romans 3, verses 10 to 18 there is an outline of what the eye of God has detected in human beings: the evidence points to resident sin in the individual.. God reveals what is hidden within the soul and heart of man. A striking manifestation of sin is linked with the mouth; "their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness" Romans 3:13-14.
Despite the accuracy and precision of the X-Ray machine, it cannot remedy the troubling situation. Similarly, the law of God reveals the sinfulness of man but is not able to cleanse the sinner and leave him in a condition to be fit to enter into God's presence. God reveals the condition of every human being and leaves him with not a word to say: "that every mouth may be stopped and all the world may become guilty before God." v.19. Everybody's behaviour is inconsistent with the divine standard, and deserves to be condemned. God established His moral law in the Ten Commandments but human beings cannot keep them and any attempts to do so end in failure. The Bible declares that by the works of the law "no flesh (can) be justified in his sight: for by the law [is] the knowledge of sin" v.20. The purpose of the law is to show that man is guilty on account of sin. The law has no power to change the verdict and is like a ruler which shows a line to be crooked but is unable to straighten it. It is like the thermometer which registers a fever but which cannot bring the temperature down.
However, there is good news! God has revealed His divine plan to save the sinner. "But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets" v.21. No one can keep the law and therefore cannot be saved through that means. However, God has revealed that there was a work done for the sinner by Christ on the cross and the benefits are received by exercising faith in what Christ did. No human effort is required. "I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth... For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, the just shall live by faith" Romans 1:16-17.
Exercising faith in the word of God is the way to receive the promised blessing. Blessing through the exercise of faith is not something new, as there are witnesses to this principle in the law and the prophets. The Israelites killed the lamb on Passover night in order to keep the firstborn alive. It was faith that brought life to the Israelites when they were dying due to snake bites in the wilderness. Moses erected the pole with a bronze serpent, saying, "Look and Live". Daniel believed in God and nothing happened in the midst of lions when he was in the den. His three companions who were cast into the fiery furnace, came out unharmed because of their faith in the power of God.
God has declared that through the work done by Christ on the cross, He saves those who believe in Him (v.22) there is no difference in the entire human race "for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." Coming short of the glory of God means coming short of the level of holiness God expects of His created beings. Sin has left man with no power to attain holiness. It is a condition that makes it impossible for him to have fellowship with God. However, through the eternal life received by faith, a sinner can be pardoned and come before God as justified by faith, having peace through Christ Jesus our Lord